Sunday, January 06, 2008

Back in Scary City...

...That is right. Today I travelled from Home City to Scary City. (For at least a while, the city I come from will still be Home City - hell, it will always be Home City to me, I think.)

As my departure approached, I felt myself shutting down. So I said goodbye to R and boarded the plane without heartache or tears. Problem is, I boarded the plane and arrived in Scary City without any emotion. I'd started to thaw out, so to speak, toward the end of my time in Home City. But I am all sewn up tight again. And I just can't make myself care about the term that starts tomorrow. When have I not cared about teaching?? I've always cared about teaching. But right now, I'm a machine. I haven't given a single thought to the class I teach starting in thirteen hours.

Again, I just need to throw myself into my research - if I can't be emotional, at least I can be cerebral. And I will feel as if I there is a point to my existence.

And I have located a potential therapist already. I have an introductory, do-we-fit? appointment with her on Tuesday afternoon. She sounds promising. I do this mostly for myself, but also I owe it to R. My relationship with her is suffering due to my ambivalence and unhappiness and I need, for its sake, to sort out my needs and desires.

I have a cat now!! For the year. She is amazingly well-adapted to this place already, and seems to have made her home the guest bed. She's a darling little black thing named Diamond. The instructions left to me by her owners (my former downstairs neighbours, who are going away for a year) say, "She likes to be gently scratched and purrs frequently." Which I find insanely freaking cute. I shall post pictures soon.

A strange bright spot is that I have accepted the work of replacing someone on a hiring committee. The candidates are coming in over the next two weeks. I shouldn't feel as interested in this as I do, given that I am predictably swamped with other beginning-of-term things, and that it will involve me being on campus five days a week this week and next (instead of four). But I am looking forward to it for some reason. A strange bright spot indeed.


Maude Lebowski said...

maybe the reason you are excited about sitting on the hiring committee is because it gives you some sort of say-so in the going ons of the department, thus giving you some control over your environment, thus making your time there a little bit more bearable.

i hope things work out with the therapist. had i not gone weekly and then biweekly while i was at GCU, i would have never survived. unhappiness in one's department can be so toxic to every aspect of one's life. my last three years of living in grad city were like this. though i haven't finished yet, at least i have some distance from the department.

at least it seems like you can through yourself into your research. when i'm in these states, i mope and sleep, hence the lack of productivity i've had in the last three years.

good luck! here's cyberhugs and well wishes for you.

neophyte said...

Hey, take the bright spots where you can get 'em.

And big YAY for kitty -- I bet she'll improve your mood dramatically, just by being her fabulous kitty self. I don't think I'm going to make it much longer without an animal -- they're so good at making you get out of yourself, think in healthier terms, experience unadulterated affection every single day.

squadratomagico said...

Yes, I think Diamond will help a great deal. Having a warm little furperson to cuddle can keep you grounded. I always find it touching that animals give so freely.

And, you also have the knowledge, now, that you will leave. You may find it necessary to tighten up in order to survive there, but you can take comfort in the fact that, ultimately, it will be temporary.

Flavia said...

Hooray for both the kitty and the therapist--in my experience, the two can work in impressive tandem to improve so many miserable situations. I'll keep my fingers crossed that the bright spots increase in size and number (and that you post pics of Diamond soon). . .

medieval woman said...

Yay on the feline furry fun for you! It's nice to have another living, moving thing in the place, huh? And I too am glad you're looking into this new therapy situation - it's a very good thing to have. I'm sorry you're having this reaction so quickly upon coming back to SC - I'd hoped that the glow of HC would stick with you a while into the semester. I think you're interest in the job committee is telling - you need to be on the other side of a job committee again next year, babe.

Good luck with classes! Can't wait to see the kitty!

Hilaire said...

Maude and MW, you're probably both right about my interest in the hiring committee...although it's not my own department, Maude, but I'm an external committee member for another department (and, indeed, faculty). But yes, it's that I want to feel in control of something, for sure. It makes my presence here feel real. And MW, absolutely - I have been trolling through the applications looking for good ones, ones that I'll try to model myself after when the time comes. I'll be on the lookout in the same way in the interview process.

And thank you, all, for your warm wishes about the cat. She is a absolutely a lovely, living presence in my life. She's pretty high-strung right now, but slowly making breakthroughs...i.e. she came and lay on my chest for a while this afternoon while I lay on the couch watching downloaded L Word!

adjunct whore said...

i'm glad to hear you're working on getting happier, for you and for R--congrats!

and on a side note: thank you thank you! you are so sweet--i haven't listened to the cd yet because of insane job crap, but will soon and report!